Jets down Wild 4-1 to take 2-0 series lead Featured

Written by  Published in Winnipeg Jets
Winnipeg, Manitoba (NHN)-The Winnipeg Jets scored a pair of third period goals 1:42 apart to take control of game two and their first round playoff series as they downed the Minnesota Wild 4-1 Friday night.

Winnipeg now holds a 2-0 series lead over the Wild in their Western Conference Quarter Final.

Tyler Myers and Paul Stastny each had a goal and an assist.

Andrew Copp and Patrik Laine also scored for the Jets.

Rookie Jack Roslovic had a pair of assists for Winnipeg.

Connor Hellebuyck turned aside 16 shots to pick up his 2nd win of the playoffs.

Zach Parise scored Minnesota's lone goal of the contest.

Devan Dubnyk stopped 39 shots for the Wild.

After a scoreless first period Tyler Myers opened the scoring 8:41 into the second period, moving in from his point position by sidestepping Jason Zucker before moving in on Dubnyk and beating him with a shot just inside the left post.

The goal was his first of the playoffs.

The Jets got physical in the second period posting a 28-18 lead in hits by the end of the period, including a monstrous check by Dustin Byfuglien on Wild captain Mikko Koivu along the end boards behind the Winnipeg net.

Paul Stastny scored 7:42 into the third period, converting a Dustin Byfuglien feed from behind the net to give the Jets a 2-0 lead.

The goal was his first of the playoffs.

“He’s just like a wild card," said Stastny of Byfuglien's unique ability to impact a game. "There are very few players like him. Very unique. Brent Burns maybe, in a different way but he’s played forward, too, in half of his life, also played defense. But he’s always moving around, too, so that’s what makes him tough to defend. Sometimes he might give up a chance here and there but he creates more chances than he gives up so I think in that sense as a forward, playing with him is nice."

Byfuglien pinched in from his point position before taking control of the disc and skating behind the Minnesota goal before feeding Stastny a backhand saucer pass that he one timed past Dubnyk to give the Jets some breathing room.

Andrew Copp made it 3-0 when he redirected a Bryan Little feed past Dubnyk 9:24 into the third period.

Patrick Laine fired an insurance goal with just over two minutes left, blasting a slapshot over Dubnyk's shoulder to make it 4-0 Jets.

The goal was his 2nd of the playoffs.

"I just tried to hit the net. I had a couple of good chances earlier. I couldn’t score, but I just have to go a little bit further away from the net to score," said Laine.

Zach Parise scored with 45 seconds left in regulation, tipping a Mikko Koivu shot past Hellebuyck to make it 4-1.

The goal was his second of the playoffs.

"We gotta figure out a way to get some offensive zone time and I feel like we've been playing on three quarters of the rink for two games now," said Parise. "You're not going to win like that."

"You're not going to win when you're getting 14 shots, 15 shots and you know 20 shots. There's just not enough room for error," he added.

"They're playing pretty good," said Wild Head Coach Bruce Boudreau. "Give the other team (Jets) credit today. They played really good. They won the battles and consequently they had the puck and it was in our zone."

"They're (Jets) a pretty good defensive team this year and you can tell they're playing hard. Not that we're not playing hard, they are playing well. They're going to be tough."

Winnipeg Head Coach Paul Maurice said his club exerted control by making good decisions. “When we had that control, we didn’t force a whole lot. We didn’t put ourselves in a difficult position to recover, so we didn’t throw a lot of things into the middle, we didn’t have any hope passes. When we had control of the puck, we were able to maintain, so the order when the possession changed. A pretty good gap, knocked an awful lot of pucks down. Copp’s goal was a good example of it where we were on the puck and had really efficient sticks," he said.

Jets winger Nikolaj Ehlers was even more efficient in his assessment of where his club stood after taking a 2-0 series lead.

"The first game was amazing. A pretty cool experience. We played OK, but … we took a huge step today. Now we want more steps," he said.

Game 3 goes Sunday night in Minnesota.



Last modified on Saturday, 14 April 2018 03:16
Philip Paul-Martin

A well rounded journalist with experience in both print and broadcast mediums, Philip has written news stories with impact, broken national news while at the CBC, anchored radio news and hosted talk show radio. His coverage includes feature writing, game stories and more in-depth pieces during the off-season as well as writing about the National Hockey League and the Winnipeg Jets. He calls Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada home.